Planckendael zoo collection
White Stork ( Ciconia ciconia ) is a large wading bird in the stork family Ciconiidae, breeding in the warmer parts of Europe (north to Estonia), northwest Africa, and southwest Asia (east to southern Kazakhstan). It is a strong migrant, wintering mainly in tropical Africa, down to the south of South Africa, and also in the Indian subcontinent.
This pic is made in Planckendael Zoo, Belgium.
Whoever visits this zoo cannot miss the large free White Storks colony. The birds are nesting on the roofs, and foraging among the public, begging for food, while children are trying to catch them…
Luckily, the roofs are safe refuge spots to quietly fix your feathers… :)
Conservation and population
Notable breeding totals occur mainly in central and eastern Europe
In Western Europe, the stork has been nearly extinct.
According to Wikipedia: “numbers in western Europe are much less healthy, with the once sizable Danish population declining to just five pairs in 1995, while re-introductions of zoo-reared birds have halted declines in Italy (30 pairs), the Netherlands (9-12 pairs), and Switzerland (120-160 pairs).
In France, twenty five years ago, the population of this bird had fallen to fewer than nine pairs in the entire upper Rhine River Valley, an area closely identified with the White Stork for centuries. Conservation efforts there, particularly by the Association for the Protection and Reintroduction of Storks in Alsace and Lorraine, have successfully increased the population of birds to 270 pairs.
Threats to the species include the drainage of wetlands and other agricultural intensification, collisions with overhead power lines, use of persistent pesticides (such as DDT) to combat locusts in Africa, and (largely illegal) hunting on passage and the wintering grounds (HBW). Some birds, known in German as Pfeilstorch (”arrow storks"), have been found in Europe with African arrows embedded in their bodies.
The White Stork is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies." (*)
(Source Wikipedia: )
Photograph made with Pentax K10D camera and
Tamron AF70-300mm Tele-macro1:2 lens
Exposure 1/500 sec, f. unknown
focal length 180 , ISO 100
Date: June 20, 2009
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